What serves as the pretext for our meeting is a recent publication - On Flowers. Łukasz Marcinkowski and Radosław Berent – the Poznań-based founders of the already-iconic flower store KWIATY&MIUT – present their entire philosophy of work on the pages full of marvelous photographs, original advice, and flower-inspired articles. I immediately become an owner of a copy embellished with a dedication and the hashtag #kwiatysapiekne [flowers are beautiful].
Poznań-based famous florists met at University of Fine Arts in Poznań, the former Academy of Fine Arts. Łukasz majored in interior design and Radek was very much into fashion and photography.
Eventually, I stopped dreaming about having my photo on the cover of Vogue. I prefer The Plant! – Radek laughs.
By that time, Łukasz had already graduated from the University of Life Sciences where he’d studied gardening. Together they started working on a project devoted to flowers and still nature. That is when they rediscovered the beauty of flowers:
Flowers evoke the perfect cycle of nature; they are the metaphor of life and death. Many consider their evanescent nature a flaw – to us, it is their most precious strength. We don’t think of them as fleeting decorative elements. We look at them as if they were paintings we can rework every day.
Gradually, their lives became that of flowers and plants. A decision to open a flower store in Jeżyce (the recently famous district of Poznań) was a turning point in their career. That’s when Łukasz’s parents lent a helping hand. If it hadn’t been for their financial support of boys’ passion, the flower store wouldn’t have come to life. The beauty of flowers wouldn’t have been redefined and discovered anew.
If you think of it, what used to be your first associations with flower stores? I bet you used to think about old-school stores imbued with the suffocating aroma of freesias. KWIATY&MIUT offers sappy succulents, cut flowers–always fresh and unique, magical compositions in glass jars, twigs, leaves, locally manufactured ceramic pots and plates…Marvels! Plants are always seasonal and from well-known suppliers, including private crops (once again, compliments to Łukasz’s parents). No cellophane, no plastic ribbons, no shiners. Pure nature.
Łukasz and Radek restore the faith in the power of flowers; the faith in celebrating everyday life, emphasizing rituals, and bringing pleasure to oneself and others. Let’s bring back smells and views from childhood, the time when there was always a vase full of garden flowers on the table. After all, the custom of giving, growing, and celebrating flowers has been deeply rooted in our culture – it’s high time we came back to it. Along with flowers, people’s stories entered the store’s realm.
"Once a week we’re visited by a woman who buys only one flower – for herself. There’s also a man who makes his own bouquet every weekend. A simple ritual."
They feel the connection with every single flower, be it through a story or an emotion. Flowers have a lot of creative force to them, they can do wonders. Flowers reunite people, help them win somebody’s heart or simply bring them aesthetic pleasure. – That’s what makes us happy and motivated – they confess.
Even though they have been continuously tempted by others to conquer other Polish cities, especially Warsaw, they remain loyal to Poznań. - We want to keep on enjoying ourselves and our work while retaining an original and recognizable style. One can easily yield to the temptation of expanding one’s business and lose control over quality. Flowers bring you down to earth. They teach you how to be patient and live your life, here and now. That’s why they are beautiful!
Just for you, Radek and Łukasz prepared a floral composition made of spring flowers to summon up this longed-for season. Try it out; hopefully, you’ll make it come!
Buttercups, mountain-ash sprigs, mahonias, kerria, lilac, fritillaries, tulips, Leopard’s bones, wonder flowers (you can use other strains provided that you follow the rules of composition)
Things you need:
florist wire (0.8-0.9 mm thick)
ball of aluminum wire
narrow-necked container, e.g. a vase or a pitcher
Steps to follow:
1. stiffen buttercups by inserting wire into their sprigs
2. put a ball of aluminum wire in a container half-filled with water
3. form the base using mountain-ash sprigs and mahonias
4. use long kerria sprigs to mark main directions, add lilacs
5. add the most visible composition elements – the biggest flowers
6. add strong accents; here – orange buttercups and wonder flowers
7. finish with light-colored and tiny elements; here – fritillaries, tulips, white buttercups and Leopard’s bones (they add lightness to the composition). Fill the container with water.
More recipes for floral compositions, flower-inspired stories, valuable pieces of advice and authors’ articles are waiting for you in "On Flowers". You can buy it in Łukasz and Radek’s store as well as directly from the publisher’s website.
We know they are preparing lots of surprises in the upcoming year! Keep your eyes open on KWIATY & MIUT. Why shouldn’t you – after all – #flowersarebeautiful!
Text: Agata Kiedrowicz